Wednesday, September 30, 2009

3 Weeks!

The little munchkin is 3 weeks old today. I can't believe it's already been 3 weeks! She's getting bigger every day. Her baby chub is finally starting to come in. She is seeming more alert and can focus on our faces better and likes to look at the ceiling fan and her swing mobile. Believe it or not, she looks even more like her dad every day too.

Joe shaved off all of his facial hair the other day just for the fun of it and I couldn't believe how much it really made them look alike. Joe also looks about 10 years younger. He has only shaved his facial hair one other time since we met, and its crazy how different he looks. It makes me feel like such a cougar.

I wanted to thank everyone for your comments and words of encouragement on my recent posts. It's so nice to hear and be reminded that I am having the same challenges and problems that most new mothers go through when they are breastfeeding and that everything will get better soon. I knew that I wasn't going through anything new or special or extra challenging, but it's new to me and all of the reading and preparing I had done could never really prepare me for everything. It's also nice to vent and have it there to look back on. Maybe it will even help a soon-to-be mom to know what things might come up.

Things are always improving. My nipples are not nearly as sore. And the engorgement issues seem to be working themselves out. I am also noticing that I am leaking less as well. I really think I might be able to venture out of the house in the next week or two. I just have to figure out how to nurse without the aid of my boppy and pillows or with us laying down. I have also found that if I stay on top of her nursings, instead of letting her go too long and become too hungry things go much more smoothly. I try to keep a closer eye on her (checking on her when I think she might be hungry soon) and notice as soon as she starts opening her mouth and sticking out her tongue. If I nurse her earlier instead of waiting until she gets upset (there's a very fine line there), she latches on better and doesn't get worked up. So as of yesterday, through today, it has been alot less stressful. She even went 3 hours between nursings twice last night and I was able to actually get a couple 2 hour sleep sessions in. Yay! Also the past couple of mornings, after Joe leaves for work, I will just bring her in the bed with me and nurse her and then we will both fall asleep for a while. I love having her in the bed with me, and she really loves it, but only when Joe is not there. There just isn't enough room for all 3 of us.

So even though we will still have days that are much harder then others, I am grateful that today is a very good day. She even smiled at me :) She has smiled in her sleep and just as a reflex many times, but today she actually smiled (several times) in response to me talking to her and snuggling with her. It melted my heart.

Last week was international babywearing week. I'm a little late, but here's a pic of us in the sleepywrap. And yes, I realize I look like a hot mess. I really need to get my hair done! (House call Michele?)

And here's a little video I took of her at 2 weeks old...

Monday, September 28, 2009

Some thoughts on Breastfeeding

I always knew I would breastfeed when we started talking about having a baby. It was just always assumed, I never gave it much thought. I have plenty of friends that use formula and some that breastfeed and it's a decision that is made by each mother based on what works best for them. Some of my friends, including my sister, tried to breastfeed, but for some reason, it just didn't work. Either it was too much work, their baby didn't take to it, or they didn't have enough milk... the list goes on. Knowing all of this, I tried to mentally prepare myself for a big challenge. I tried to prepare for things to be very hard and that I would have to work very hard and be very patient for things to work out. I read plenty of books about breastfeeding, I attended La Leche League Meetings and I talked to all of my friends that breastfed successfully and unsuccessfully. I hoped that it would go very smoothly and that things would easily fall into place, but incase it didn't, I wanted to prepare. I was determined to make it work through any challenge.

It's a good thing I prepared, because things have definitely been very challenging.

From the get go, I had no problem producing enough milk. She latched on really well at first. Even in the hospital, within minutes of birth, she nursed for 30 minutes. It seemed like we were already pros. Before my milk came in, while my breasts were filled with colostrum, we seemed to naturally move from one nursing position to the next with ease. I was able to even walk around with her in my arms and nurse. I was nursing and eating my lunch at the same time, something the nurses seemed to be very impressed with, since I was a first time mom.

She had jaundice, but it was mild, so I refused to give her a bottle with formula when the doctor ordered that I supplement to get her bowels moving to help the jaundice numbers go down. With my hormones all out of whack, I cried as I told them there was no way they were giving my baby a bottle so soon before breastfeeding had even been established. I had read too much about nipple confusion and this wasn't something I wanted to deal with this early on (now realize how very very glad I am that I stood my ground, more on this below). I agreed to a "Supplemental Nursing System", which used a tiny tube that sat next to my nipple to deliver some formula while she breastfeed at the same time. When they weren't looking, I didn't use it, and once home, I threw it away. But she still ate like a champ and filled their poopy diaper quota. Her jaundice numbers went down and everything turned out fine.

My milk came in 2.5 days after the munchkin was born, and my boobs swelled up to the size of watermelons. Suddenly positioning her wasn't as easy. I remember right as my milk was coming in, I looked down at her, and suddenly she seemed so much further away from me. It took my a minute to realize that my boob had nearly doubled in size and it was threatening to suffocate my baby! And she too seemed confused and overwhelmed by the sheer mass of this breast sitting on top of her face. I am not exaggerating here... my breasts are ginormous! Some of the positions that were easier before, now seemed impossible. We were scrambling to figure out what to do. We figured it out though, and we found new positions that worked better.

Every day (and every night) is different. Sometimes she will go 2-3 hours between nursing, sometimes she will go 1 hour, or maybe only 30 minutes. Sometimes she just wants to comfort nurse, or sometimes she wants a 5 minutes snack. It's tiring, and frustrating, and at the same time, I feel that every nursing brings us closer, that we are bonding, and I am giving her the nourishment and comfort that she needs right now. I am building her trust in the world. And even though it can be very exhausting, it's easy to give her what she needs when she wants it. I love her so much, how could I do anything less for her? But that is not to say, that I do not get overwhelmed and can understand why some opt for formula. I have thought about how much easier things would be. How my husband could take turns feeding her and that I could get more then 1.5 - 2 hours of sleep at a time. But everyone keeps telling me this phase is short and things will get easier. She will go longer between nursings and this will pass before I know it. So I hang on to that thought and I repeat to myself many times a day.

It would help if I could get out of the house for a while and take a break. But did I mention how engorged my boobs get? I have quite an abundance of milk. The call it an oversupply, and if I had twins or maybe even triplets, no one would be going hungry. I was told that if they became engorged I could pump to relieve the pressure. I took this too far and was pumping 2-6 oz at a time with a manual hand pump, several times a day. Within a week, I had about 30 bags of breastmilk frozen and stored. I felt like I was pumping or nursing all day, without much time for anything else. I started to get worried that this was going to go on forever. After doing a little research, I realized that by pumping so much, I was making things worse. I was signaling to my breasts that this was how much milk I needed to and to keep producing that much. I had to stop cold turkey, try to endure the discomfort, and only pump a little tiny bit when things became too painful.

So last Monday (one week ago), I quit pumping. It's been a rough week. My boobs were leaking everywhere. I would have huge wet circles on my shirts and when she would nurse from one side, the other would leak really bad. When she would try to latch on, my milk would come out in so much force that she would cough and sputter. As she moved away from my nipple, milk would squirt out and spray her in her nose, or her eye or all over her face. So when it would get really bad, I would pump just a tiny bit first and make it easier for her to nurse. Or I would get in the shower and let them leak out to release some of the pressure. Sometimes I would just turn on the warm water in the sink and let them drain out into the sink. I always have to have burp cloths layered underneath us while nursing, or everything will get wet. After a week, I can say things have definitely improved quite a bit, but we still have a ways to go. I haven't had to pump at all for a few days, and they are leaking quite a bit less. They still become very full, but not to the point they were before, where I felt like they were going to burst open at any moment.

A few days ago, the munchkin was acting particularly fussy. She seemed to want to nurse nonstop and she was crabby, tired and fighting sleep. So I decided to try giving her a pacifier. She took to it pretty well, and after sucking on it for a few minutes, she drifted off to sleep. Over the next day and a half we gave it to her whenever she started getting fussy. It calmed her right down almost every time. But then I started noticing she was taking longer to latch on and then she wasn't latching on at all. She would act hungry, but then scream and cry as soon as I tried to bring her to my nipple to nurse. She would flair her arms around and push my breast away from her. I knew right away it was because of the pacifier. She had "nipple confusion" and didn't want to latch on to my nipple any more. She was also starving and had worked herself into quite a tizzy, so she had no interest at all into taking her time to try to nurse. I had to pump about 1.5 oz and feed it to her with a medicine dropper to take the edge off of her hunger and calm her down. Then we layed down in the bed on our sides and after 30 minutes of trying, she finally latched on. For the next day, she would only nurse with us laying down in the bed, as this was easier and more comfortable for her. She has almost had to retrain her mouth to breastfeed, and we are now using completely different positions then we were before, and she seems to have no interest in nursing in the old ones right now. Now she has also taken to nursing every 1.5 hours for 5-10 minutes at a time. This was our schedule all last night and so far today. Up until now... she has been napping for 2 hours!

Needless to say the pacifier has been put away for now. I was going to introduce a bottle at 4 weeks, just to have her try it out, but now I am going to wait until 6 weeks. This is frustrating, because I know I will be the only one to feed her for another 3 weeks, but I just feel that for the long term, this is going to be the best for her. If just having the pacifier messed things up that bad, the bottle could definitely do more damage.

So thats where we are now. Every day is different, but I think we are still getting better and that hopefully in the next couple of weeks, we will have these kinks worked out. We are both learning and getting to know each other. It's not easy, infact, it's pretty hard sometimes, but it is also very rewarding and I know we will have this part behind us soon.

She is lucky she is so damn cute.

Monday, September 21, 2009

I am going to have to accept it...

My baby girl looks nothing like me.... she is definitely her daddy's girl. We think she has my ears... but that's about it. It's crazy how different she already looks then when we first brought her home. It seems like she changes every day.

The last week has been going okay.... I am having a hard time adjusting to the new sleeping (or lack there of) schedule. The breastfeeding has been harder then I expected. Her eating schedule seems to change daily. She is only 2 weeks old (almost), so I am sure this is normal and it will get better, but it's definitely trying. She will go for spurts of eating every hour, to eating every 3, or she will sleep for too long, I will have to wake her up to eat. Last night she ate every 3-3.5 hours all night... which was our best night yet and I feel like I was able to get some real actual sleep.

I had so much milk, that I began pumping to relieve the engorgment. Next thing you know, I am pumping alot, anywhere from 8-20 oz per day depending on how many feedings she had. At first I was really excited to start building up the extra milk, but then I began to get worried about how long this would last... I felt like I was constantly nursing or pumping. After some research I realized that by pumping so much I was only making things worse and I was signaling my breasts to continue to make that much milk. I had to stop pumping, cold turkey, which has been really hard. My breasts become so full and painful and I have to try to endure it until things balance themselves out. I express a tiny little bit when things get too uncomfortable, but thats about it. At this point I couldn't even consider leaving the house, I would be leaking everywhere. Hopefully things will adjust within a week or so.

As far as latching on, we are doing pretty good. One side is great, I actually enjoy nursing her on that side now, but the left side still needs improvement. It's definitely getting better, but it's still pretty sore. I keep having to remove her and start over until she gets her latch right. Which naturally, frustrates her quite a bit.

The day after she was born, she already started holding her head up on her own. I can't believe how long she can hold it up there. She doesn't hold it very steady, and I keep my hand there in case it flies backwards, but I am amazed at how strong her neck is already!

Overall, she is a pretty happy baby, and I feel very lucky. As long as her diaper is clean, her belly is full and she is held when she wants to be, she seems pretty content. I am really looking forward to her getting just a little bit bigger so I can put her in her slings and wraps. I have tried a couple of times, but she is just so damn small and skinny, I think she just needs to fatten up a little before she is comfortable in them. It is definitely going to make life much easier. Sometimes all she wants is to just be carried around the house with me.

Joe went back to work this week. I was really nervous about it. I knew we would be fine, but it was still so soon and I felt like I had barely started to adjust to things, and that was with him there. I knew there was going to be much more adjusting without him in the mix. Things have been going pretty good so far. I have a feeling that for a while, I will not be able to do much else besides tend to the munchkin until he gets home from work. Just doing basic things, like going to the bathroom, or making myself something to eat, can be hard, if she happens to be in the mood where she wants me to hold her or she starts crying. She has passed out in her swing for the moment, so I am quickly typing this post before she wakes up.

I think the hardest part of all though, has been my emotional roller coaster. The Baby Blues are no joke. It is definitely getting better, but for a while there, I would cry at anything that upset me at all. Anything. And even though I know in my head that it is just my hormones, I still feel very sad and I can only wait it out until it passes. I believe it is getting better though. Every day, I have less "episodes" and every day I feel more like myself again. Well, other then the lack of sleep thing.

Tomorrow she will be 2 weeks old. The time sure is flying by.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Munchkin is one week old today!

I can't believe it's already been a week....

I have been wanting to get on here and update things... but its been so crazy. I have been in a fog with everything going on... and sleep is but a distant memory. It's like I have been living in a hazy dream world, and I do not focus on much other then feeding the baby, changing the baby's diaper, soothing the baby and trying to sleep when she does. And when I can muster up enough energy, I try to take care of other things that need to be done as well, like clean the breast pump parts (which has to be done between every use), laundry (1-2 loads per day, used to be 1-2 loads per week for just me), eat some food, and if everything else is done... straighten up a little.

Breastfeeding has been going great, all things considered. We are new at it, so we are still getting the hang of it ofcourse. But it's been getting easier and easier. I know I said before she was here, I had no idea my boobs could get so big.... well that was nothing. I have what we are now calling "porn star boobs". The are out of control. She has been eating great though and gaining weight like a champ. I have alot of extra milk too, and have already stored up 13 bottles worth in the freezer, just from pumping when I am engorged. I am pretty happy about that.

Her diaper changes, along with their contents, are right where they should be as well. I had been logging everything in a notebook and keeping track of feeding times and other details about her diaper changes, but everything has been going so well, that I am now just using the itzbeen and keeping track of how long its been since her last feeding and last diaper change. It's so much easier this way. Trying to log it all in the middle of the night while breastfeeding was not an easy task. With the itzbeen, I simply hit a button and it keeps track for me. Nice.

The first couple of nights we had her home she was strapped to a biliblanket. This is something used to treat babies at home who have jaundice. Luckily her numbers were borderline and she almost didn't need it, but to be cautious the doc wanted her on it anyway. She had to have it on her all of the time, other then eating and diaper changes, for the first two nights. This made things so much harder, as we were confined to a very small area with her because it was attached to a big power box with a short, thick cord. We had everything set up in the living room near the couch with her vibrating chair. The chair was great for soothing her and helping her fall asleep. The real life saver was her swaddler. This allowed us to wrap her up tightly in the biliblanket, without it wiggling loose and it didn't seem to bother her too badly. We have been using her swaddlers nonstop and she really loves them. Probably one of my favorite baby products so far.

We took the munchkin to her first doctor's appointment on Tuesday morning and she did great. She has gained all of her weight back to her birth weight, plus another 4 oz, and her jaundice numbers are continuing to drop. She stayed pretty calm for the most part, but she did start to get really hungry before we left. We had to hold her over until we could get home. I don't have much as far as nursing clothes yet, other then tank tops and night gowns, so I wasn't ready to nurse outside of the house yet. Hopefully I can expand my wardrobe soon.

Last night we decided to start having her sleep in the bedroom with us. We strapped the Arm's Reach Mini Co-Sleeper to the side of the bed and brought in all of her supplies. Breastfeeding stuff, diapers, burp cloths, well anything we though we might need. I wanted to see how things would go and start getting her used to the night time before Joe went back to work next week. I assumed it wouldn't go well the first night and we even imagined Joe leaving to go sleep on the couch before morning arrived. But amazingly enough, it went great. She didn't even cry once the entire night! I didn't sleep very heavily ofcourse and everytime I heard her make more noise then the usual baby sleeping noises, I would look over at her. If she was starting to scrunch up her face alot I would check her diaper, if she was opening and closing her mouth alot and sticking out her tongue, I would feed her. Since I am still sore and can't turn and move very well in certain ways, some things were a strain, but it will get better. Tonight may be very different ofcourse, but it was great that I was able to actually get some sleep in between her feedings and Joe was able to pretty much sleep right through the night.

So today, I am feeling much more like my old self. I have some energy back and all of the soreness and pain from labor is subsiding considerably. I am starting to get to know the little munchkin better and am getting better at reading her signs and moods more every day. My house is starting to look more under control and I feel like I am more in the real world now.

Joe has been wonderful. More so then I could have ever imagined. He is so smitten with this little baby and has been such an amazing daddy to her. He is also at my becking call, going and getting everything I need, making me food, and running out to the store as soon as something comes up. Its crazy how I look at him now. It's new and different and very exciting. It's a new level of love and adoration that I didn't quite expect, but am very happy to find.

Here's Joe and the munchkin catching some zzzzzz's.

Joe giving her her first bath at home.

So today is her one week birthday. She already looks so different from the day she arrived. Here are some pics I took of her today.

As usual, she is wearing one of her swaddlers. She likes to wiggle around in it and it works its way up around her sometimes. So I have to re-adjust it every once in a while.

Trying to catch up on some emails.... I'm still all puffy and swollen from the IV during labor. That should wear off soon.

And a close-up.

I haven't been able to read anyone's blogs... so I hope everyone is doing great! I will try to get caught up at some point...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Little Munchkin is on her way!!!!!

I am at the hospital now... my water was broken at 9:15.... they will start pitocin soon if things don't kick up on their own soon...

Regardless, I am not coming home without a baby... Yay!!!!!!

Oh and most likely her birthday is going to be 9-9-09... how cool is that?

Could we be almost there?

I went to my doctor's appointment today at 3:00. The nurse practitioner, Julie, stretched me out to 2 cm and stripped my membranes. I was already having some contractions while I was there and she is confident I will be going into the hospital tonight!!

I sure hope she is right... I will try to keep everyone posted!

If not they moved my induction date up to the 10th... so atleast the end will be here soon regardless.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Labor Day (Minus the Labor)

I hope everyone is having a fantastic Labor Day!

I have to admit... mine is not going so well. I am trying to stay positive, I know that 3 days past my due date is nothing out of the ordinary. Most woman deliver after their due date. I keep telling myself she will come when she's ready... try to take this time to relax and enjoy being off work... blah blah blah. And I am trying, I really am, but the extreme discomfort I have been feeling is making things alot harder for me.

When I roll over in bed, or spread my legs apart to exit the car, I literally feel like my pelvis is splitting in half. I will feel a large popping and then the pain will shoot through my pelvic area like I am being stabbed. Its beyond uncomfortable. Sometimes, especially at night when I am trying to roll from one side to the other, it will even make me cry out in pain.

I am huge! My belly is absolutely ginormous at this point. I had no idea that I could ever be this big. I bump it into everything. I have to sit so far away from the table when I am eating, I end up wearing half of my meal on my boobs or my belly.

I have also felt a decrease in fetal movement. I have called and talked to the doctor and after doing kick counts, have been assured there is nothing to worry about, but considering how much she moved around before, this isn't something I am used to having to think about at all. It makes me nervous and frustrated.

I am tired and exhausted and done with being pregnant. I am trying really hard to keep on that smiley face and stay upbeat and positive, but with each passing day it becomes more and more difficult. It is starting to really weigh on me, not just physically, but emotionally as well.

I am not looking forward to the work week starting back up again for my husband tomorrow. Atleast with the weekend and today being a holiday, he is home with me and is a big help in keeping my mind of things and staying positive. I have a feeling being home all day by myself is going to make things a little harder.

I have been trying some of the old wive's tales and ofcourse nothing has been working. Not that I really thought anything would, but I figure it can't hurt and it gives me something to do. I have been eating spicy stuff, and pineapple and walking, walking, walking. I can't really walk any more now, due to the pelvic pain and pressure I have been feeling, but until that became too bad, I was walking quite a bit. Everyone keeps saying that we need to have sex, but thats just not an option at this point, although we did give it a try.

The one thing that would most likely work, taking Castor oil, is just not something I feel comfortable doing. I may change my mind later, but I guess I'm just not quite desperate enough yet. The idea of possibly spending several hours peeing out of my ass and puking at the same time is enough to deter me for the moment.

She will come when she is good and ready. And this time is fleeting and will soon be a distant memory. I tell myself all of this and I know that it is true. But it doesn't make the way I feel right now any less intense. I am also hormonal and emotional and everything is amplified due to this as well. I am scheduled to be induced on the 14th if nothing happens before then. I would rather not be medically induced, as this makes a natural birth with no epidural so much more difficult due to the increased strength and intensity of the contractions (through everything, an epidural is not something I am completely dismissing, I am just going to really try to go without). I really want things to move along naturally and I am hoping to not have to continue feeling like this for another week.

Here are some pictures Joe took of me today. We are getting ready to go for some sushi with our friends Toni and Dan. Getting some sushi and hanging out with them has put me in better spirits. Maybe some spicy rolls will get things going...

I know many of you have been through this and have felt the same way. So if you would all do me a huge favor and send some prayers/wishes out there into the universe that I go into labor very very very soon... I would really really appreciate it!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Not much to report here...

We slept in until noon today! Granted we stayed up really late last night watching a movie and hanging out, but still.... noon! I am starting to regress back to my early 20's or even my teenage years. It can't last long, so I might as well take advantage while I can.

We didn't do a whole lot today. We mostly just hung out and relaxed. Today is my good friend Anna's 30th birthday! We decided to get out of the house for a while and go visit her. I also wanted to bring her bday present to her. And ofcourse it is always nice to get to see her little man BBZ. His one year birthday is coming up on the 19th and they had some pictures taken today to celebrate. They turned out really good... BBZ is so adorable!

After our visit, we went to Macaroni Grill for a late lunch/early dinner. I had chicken cannelloni and it was fantastic. Then we decided to stop in to Marshall's and do some shopping/walking around. I was really excited to find some Baby Legs there for only $4 per pair. I had ordered a few pairs already online when they were on sale, but the ones I found today were called "my 1st babylegs". They are a little shorter then the regular ones and will fit better when she is a newborn. I was excited to find them there, they don't even sell these on their website. I am not sure if it is something they discontinued or what, but I bought both pairs I saw. I wish there were more!

After we came home, we decided to go for another walk up the hill on our street. It is so hard to get up that hill! By the time I got to the top I was completely out of breath. We walked down a couple streets and around a court, then headed back home. It is so hard to go for a walk in our neighborhood, it really kinda sucks. I live at the bottom of a huge hill on the very end of a dead end street, so you have to hike up the hill to begin any walk. Our neighborhood also is completely void of sidewalks and an underground sewer system, so if I car comes along, you have to walk as close as you can to the edge of the street. If 2 cars are coming from both directions, you should probably walk in the ditch along the road, which is usually muddy if there's been any rain at all. So typically, we drive to the park or I go to my sister's neighborhood to walk with her. But we really just wanted to go for a quick little walk, so we risked, and made it back in one piece. It reminded me though, why we don't go for walks here.

After our walk, I took a shower and shaved my legs. Shaving is always a big event in itself. I can't believe how difficult and exhausting it is to shave. It's so hard to work around this big huge belly and reach everything! The thought has crossed my mind to just let it go... but I just can't do it.

So now I am just catching up on some blogs and my email. We are getting ready to watch yet another movie. I have watched more movies in the last 2 weeks then I have in months! Duplicity is on the agenda for this evening. I am a big Julia Roberts fan. Pretty much ever since Pretty Woman came out, I have loved her.

Oh and incase you didn't notice, I am still pregnant.

The Due Date has Come and Gone

Today was my due date (well yesterday since it's after midnight, but I am going to report things as if it is still my due date). I was really hoping she was going to be punctual, but no luck.

I woke up at the now usual 11:00 am. I felt rested and not at all like I was going to go into labor at any moment. I leisurely rolled myself out of bed. I fixed myself a plate with scrambled eggs, an english muffin with peanut butter and some strawberries. I read some blogs, checked my email, checked my facebook.

And then I was bored.

I really thought things might have started up last night. I was having some contractions before I went to bed. I was nautious and feeling queezy. We even laid a shower curtain underneath all of the sheets incase my water broke during the night. Plus it was her due date. This was when she was due. But other then the hourly bathroom trips there wasn't much action.


Joe came home for lunch. He had a sandwich, I devoured a bunch of pineapple, because this could help me go into labor. We hung out until he had to head back out to work. After he left, I did some work with our finances and organized some things.

I'm not even sure what else I did. Obviously it wasn't anything important. Joe came home from work around 3:00 and we took a nap until 7:00. After we woke up, we made dinner (some grilled chicken and broccoli and rice) and then we decided to go out on the town. It was after all, Friday night.... we couldn't just sit at home! So we went to Fritz, our local custard stand and we had a couple of concretes (oreo for me, heath for Joe, both with Lite custard). It was a really nice night out, so we sat on a bench and enjoyed our custard. Then we went to Blockbuster to pick out a couple of movies, then to Walmart. Because anyone who is cool hangs out at Walmart on a Friday night. Why should we be the exception?

Mostly I just wanted to walk around. Ofcourse it didn't help.

So here we are at almost 1:00am in the morning. Joe just left to get some popcorn for the movie, as he somehow managed to burn two bags in a row in the microwave. He was too busy flirting with me to pay attention to it. How can I complain about that?

Maybe something will happen tonight. Maybe not. In the meantime, I have to admit I am really enjoy all this relaxing and hanging out with my hubs.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known. ~ Carl Sagan

Today was my 2nd day home from work. I admit I am a little bored. I think it's mostly due to the fact that I have such a hard time getting around, so I am not able to occupy my time with my list of things to do. If I could do that, I would be one happy lady. Instead, I can lay around, relax, read, watch tv or a movie, eat and sleep. All of these things are great, but I can only do them for so long. I have been reading so much lately already, that I am only able to fill my day so much with it. Daytime TV gets really old, I don't watch much tv as it is. I have found that being home does wonders for my diet. It's much easier for me to eat really healthy when I am at home with the time and tools to prepare myself a healthy meal or snack.

I suppose I should enjoy this while I can. The little munchkin will be arriving any day now, and once she is here, there will be no lack of things to do I am sure. I do feel much more rested. I have been sleeping in till about 11:00 both mornings and I feel much better when I get out of bed then I have lately. Since I have been home from work, the swelling in my feet has gone down and stayed down. I can't believe it, my cankles are very nearly non-existent! Granted the weather has been much cooler, but I also believe that not having to sit at my desk all day long plays a huge role.

Last night, my mom came over and picked me up. We went to Walmart so she could grab a few things and I could walk all over the store. Then she took me out to dinner and we watched a movie after we got back. It was really fun to hang out with her all night and it feels good to have your mom take care of you still every once in a while. Joe had an evening meeting for work and a couple softball games, so I would have been sitting at home all by myself if she hadn't come over. We watched the movie Smiley Face, with Anna Faris. I don't recall every seeing any previews for it and we had no idea what to expect when we picked it from the Redbox. Basically the entire movie was Anna Faris getting really really stoned and messing up everything she did that day. The movie was pretty stupid, but somehow we still laughed really hard and pretty often. I guess you could use the saying, "so stupid it's funny..."

This morning I woke up around 11:00 and made myself some breakfast. I caught up on some blogs and emails and did some laundry. Joe came home from work early and we had lunch. We decided to go out for a walk, but today was a little warmer so we decided to go to the mall and walk around there in the air conditioning. We ended up visiting Pier 1, Best Buy and the mall. Joe did pick out the cutest outfit when we stopped in Gap. They had a bunch of their baby clothes on clearance, so we couldn't help but grab a few things. Here's the little jumpsuit he picked out. I can't wait to put it on her!

Is that not freaking adorable?

By the time we were done with all the walking, my pelvis was so sore, I could barely get out of the car once we were home. Joe had to help me and it was very difficult. I am still having contractions, but they are few and far between and have not become more intense as far as I can tell. The back labor has completely gone away, and now I just have the usual lower back pain that comes after walking too much or sitting in a chair for too long.

I am ready to stop walking around my house and looking at all the things sitting around waiting for her arrival. Her room is ready, our home is ready... we are ready!

Here are some of the outfits I can't wait to put on her...

Here is the little hat I got for her newborn pictures...

Here's her diapers... all ready for her bum!

Some books I can't wait to read to her...

The bathtub all ready for bath time...

Tomorrow is my actual due date. Joe was teasing me today, saying that maybe she is just like her mother and likes to stick to the schedule. I sure hope he's right and that she will arriving tomorrow. It's not that I mind waiting a little longer, but things are starting to get downright painful and I am having a hard time remaining patient.

I wanted to take a minute to show some love for my doggy Daisy. She has been an only child for almost 9 years now, and her world is about to completely change as well. You can tell she knows something is about to happen. Even when we were running around the house the other day getting our stuff together so we could leave for the hospital, she was totally aware that something very different was happening. She kept chasing after my heels and following me every where. She seemed very concerned and she was even shaking! I really hope that she adjusts well. She's kinda set in her ways and is always a little on edge when children are around. We have to remember to still give her lots of love and affection so she doesn't resent the baby. I having a feeling she is going to do just fine.

Here I am telling her not to worry, she is still going to be very important!

So I guess, for now, I just need to try to remain relaxed and take advantage of this time to get some rest. I do have a few books I wouldn't mind finishing up, so maybe I will work on that tomorrow. I am glad the weekend is almost here and Joe has a light work day tomorrow. I feel so much better when he is around.

Thank you for everyone's good wishes... I will be keeping every one posted as much as I can. I can't wait to tell everyone that she is on her way... and even better, that she is here!!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

False Alarms

On the way to work yesterday, at about 6:45 am, I started to feel some pretty intense back pain. Once I got to work it started to hurt more and more. I knew this wasn't your regular lower back pain, I was already having plenty of that in recent weeks. As the pain became more intense, I started to do my work as if I was leaving and not coming back. I prepped all of my approved files to be printed, backed up everything for the month, and tried to get everything in order. Around 8:30, I told my boss I was in too much pain and had to go. I brought him up to speed on everything and where I was in my work. I guess he could tell I might not be back for a while. He gave me a big hug and told me it would all be over soon. It was really kinda sweet.

On my drive home, the pain became even more intense. It reminded me of the onset of a kidney stone, but lower and more localized. It was about 8:45, so my doctor's office wasn't answering their phones yet (they open at 9:00). So I called the hospital and they told me to talk to my doctor first. I got home shortly after that and Joe was getting ready for work. I was looking pretty upset at this point, as the back pain was getting pretty intense. I told him I was calling the doctor at 9 just to see what they thought and to still do what he was doing. Finally I got a hold of a nurse at the doctor's office. I told her about the back pain, she asked me if my stomach was hard at all. I told her it was hard as a rock. She thought it sounded like I was having back labor and that I should head straight to the hospital for evaluation, and they would call ahead for me. I knew nothing was going to happen right away anyway, so I decided to take a shower first. The hot water did wonders for my pains and even though they didn't go away, it did make me feel better. We packed all of our bags just incase we were going to be there a few days and headed out.

Once at the hospital, they admitted me, I peed in a cup, stripped off my clothes, and put on the gown and laid down in the bed. We left all of our stuff in the car for now, but I was glad to know I brought my own night gowns to wear because those hospital gowns are awful. They hooked me up to the monitors to check the baby and my contractions. According to the monitor, I was having some contractions, but they were pretty far apart and I wasn't really even feeling them. Then the nurse wanted to check my cervix. She was rough and she had left me feeling a little violated. She pulled the sheets off the bed quickly and lowered the bed to lay me down flat. Her fingers were short and stubby (this was something she was telling me, I couldn't tell from my point of view), so it was hard for her to check and painful as she was working really hard to figure things out. She reported back that my cervix was still at 1cm dialated and about 50% effaced. Boo.

I know it's silly, but during this whole episode I was very aware of Joe sitting on the little couch near the end of my bed. Did I mention I have gained 60 lbs during this pregnancy? Joe has seen me without clothes on plenty, but I was still a little uncomfortable laying there in the bright sunlight from the window and the rough nurse jerking me around with absolutely nothing to cover me at all. I know also that this was nothing compared to what was to come and that Joe loves me and could care less right now, he knows I am pregnant. But there was still that part of me, that wanted to tell that nurse to chill out a minute and let me grab a part of that sheet to cover up that thunder thigh.... couldn't she tell my husband was sitting right there?! I couldn't help it... I'm a silly girl I guess.

I got over it pretty quickly though. Obviously there wasn't much room for modesty in this whole process and having my cervix checked was pretty tame compared to the whole labor thing we were going to go through at some point. Oh and incase you were wondering, Joe has been to the doctor's office with me during a cervix check, but he was always standing up near my torso and I was covered up pretty good for the most part.

They called my doctor to let her know what was going on, after they got a 20 minute reading from my monitors. They determined that I was in pre-labor, but that it could be later that night or the next day or two before anything happened. They wanted me to go home, and wait till the contractions were much stronger and closer together. They did not want me to return to work.

So we went home. After lunch, I took a nap, while Joe went out to work for a while. After he returned, we went to the park and walked around for a while, trying to get things going. Joe tried some maternity accupressure on me. I sat on my giant balance ball to spread my hips apart and relieve some of the pressure. I even walked up the giant hill that is my street. I also walked laps around my house. And although I was still very uncomfortable, nothing seemed to be progressing. We made dinner, we watched a movie. I did start to have more contractions before I went to bed, but nothing severe.

This morning I woke up feeling better. My back pain has subsided and I am not feeling any contractions at all. I am disappointed. I know things can progress and then slow down and stop and start again, and you can't predict the schedule or what's going to happen, but with all the pain I was in yesterday, I thought for sure something was going to happen some time soon.

My sister just got here, and we are headed to the park to do some more walking. I hope that gets things going again! I will keep everyone posted!